16:04 GMT +318 December 2018
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    This photo taken on April 20, 2018 shows collectible cards featuring (L-R) Portugal's forward Cristiano Ronaldo, the Fifa World Cup Trophy and Argentina's forward Lionel Messi as part of a series featuring players for the 2018 Russia football World Cup at the Panini Group factory in Modena, northern Italy

    Charges Won't Stick: Armed Robbers Storm Print House to Steal World Cup Stickers

    © AFP 2018 / MARCO BERTORELLO
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    The popular stickers by Modena, Italy-based collectibles company Panini have commanded attention, and skyrocketing prices, ahead of the kickoff of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia next week.

    Heavily armed robbers broke into a printing house in the Argentinian capital of Buenos Aires last weekend and made off with 638 boxes of Panini World Cup stickers, local media have reported. With each box containing 1,000 packets of stickers priced at 60 cents US apiece, the bandits' haul is estimated to be worth over $360,000.

    The armed robbers got their hands on the stickers after storming the printing house, intercepting the manager as he arrived at work, and then forcing employees to load the boxes containing the valuable collectibles into their truck.

    Security officials said security cameras at the factory were unable to identify the criminals' faces, and that the bandits remain at large.

    Football fans on Twitter had a field day joking about the bizarre robbery. Some jested about the difficulties associated with finding some of the more rare stickers, while others joked about their expense, or the absurdity of the situation.

    Others simply 'stuck' to sticker-related puns.

    The 2018 FIFA World Cup is set to kick off on June 15, and run across 12 stadiums in 11 Russian cities including Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara, Saransk, Rostov-on-Don, Yekaterinburg and Sochi until July 15.

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    Tags:
    stickers, bizarre, armed robbery, World Cup 2018, Panini, Argentina
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